While Kunde’s darker works are eliciting warm responses, the process of creating them can be intense.
“Though ‘Revolution Narrative’ was shown as one piece, I think of it as a series,” Kunde explains. “I worked on it full-time for about three months. If you add in research, gathering materials, sketching and painting, it probably took over 300 hours. While working on it, I felt inspired and excited by the fact that I was trying something new. At the same time, I felt a level of intensity [from] following the news nonstop on a daily basis.”
Kunde has lightened up a bit, at least temporarily, with Tribute, a series he began painting in April. It combines the sunny colors of his children’s and landscape works with the black-and-white palette of his gloomier paintings to depict scenes from the streets of Miami. After shooting photographs that serve as a guide, he painted works such as “Lincoln Road,” “Pennsylvania Avenue” and “Causeway.” Parts are painted in black and white, while other sections are depicted in vibrant colors that depict sunlight and blue skies.
Kunde says his friends and family seem to prefer these more-accessible works. “My friends in the art world, on the other hand, have shown more interest in the darker ones,” he adds. “I guess some people like what I call pretty paintings, and other people are more interested in ones that are thought-provoking.”